U.S. Reps. Jason Crow and Doug Lamborn have introduced a bill to rename and formalize the responsibilities of the Pentagon office that provides technical and financial assistance to military communities by investing in supportive infrastructure or downsizing base operations.
“Aurora is the proud home of Buckley Air Force Base and our success has been buoyed through the work of the Office of Economic Adjustment,” said Crow. “The OEA plays a tremendous role in bridging the gap between our military and the communities they call home by supporting efforts around sustainability, readiness, and resiliency. The Defense Community Investment Act ensures we protect the OEA from shortsighted budget cuts and firmly establish the critical role they play for our military bases and communities.”
The bill will be included as a provision in the proposed 2021 National Defense Authorization Act, the annual legislation to set policies and expenditure levels for the U.S. Department of Defense. The OEA would be relabeled as the Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation. Parts of the OEA’s work currently are written in law, while others are provided for by executive order.
Crow’s office said that the Department of Defense has left-long term staff vacancies in the office. In February, the Federal News Network reported that the Pentagon intended to save nearly $8 billion by cutting programs and shuffling functions in order to fund “innovation and warfighting requirements.” The OEA was among the potential programs to experience cuts.